Boost for youth employment prospects just around the corner

Deputy mayor Matt Austin, Jay Butler, Cootamundra MP Katrina Hodgkinson, Phoebe McDermott, council business support officer Nicole Barton, community centre manager Amy Murphy and councillor Pam Halliburton.

Deputy mayor Matt Austin, Jay Butler, Cootamundra MP Katrina Hodgkinson, Phoebe McDermott, council business support officer Nicole Barton, community centre manager Amy Murphy and councillor Pam Halliburton.

A fresh training program aimed at boosting young people’s employment prospects is drawing near with several spots still available.

Upskillin It, which is slated to begin in July, is designed to ease the transition between high school and the workplace, while reducing instances of people leaving school with limited employment prospects.

The 12-month program is designed for 15-25-year-olds and includes courses covering hospitality, agriculture and foundational skills.

Council’s business support officer for communities and recreation Nicole Barton said the concept was born from a lack of local opportunities.

“In order for young people to complete any sort of course, they would generally have to go to Wagga and often that proved either difficult or impossible,” Mrs Barton said.

“That contributed to a lot of people finishing school without much direction and feeling a little bit lost.”

Mrs Barton said the project would broaden young people’s horizons.

“Hopefully this will give them the confidence to get out there and try something they never would’ve attempted otherwise,” she said.

“We hope it will give them a taste of what else is out there and show them they are more than capable.”

Mrs Barton said the program was made possible by $47,000 of state funding, which was awarded in October last year. 

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